YOUNG ARTIST COMPETITION

The HSO’s Young Artists Competition is an elite concerto competition open to all Connecticut residents in grades 9-12. Contestants compete for cash awards and a chance to solo with the HSO at The Bushnell.

Application deadline Wednesday, February 1, 2023 
Early application deadline Thursday, December 15, 2022

Semi-Final Round of Competition Saturday, April 22, 2023 
Westminster Presbyterian Church, West Hartford 

Final Round of Competition Saturday, May 20, 2023
Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts, Hartford

  • Contestants must be Connecticut residents in grades 9-12 during the 2022-2023 academic year.
  • Previous first-place winners of HSO’s Young Artists Competition are not eligible.
  • Contestants must perform on one of the following instruments:
    • Flute
    • Oboe
    • Clarinet
    • Bassoon
    • Horn
    • Trumpet
    • Trombone
    • Tuba
    • Saxophone
    • Percussion
    • Harp
    • Piano
    • Violin
    • Viola
    • Cello
    • Bass
    • Guitar

Complete applications must include:

  • Online application form
  • Performance videos
  • $50 non-refundable application fee. $40 application fee if you apply by December 15, 2022.
  • Optional: headshot and bio

Scholarships are available to cover the application fee. If you are in need of financial assistance, please email us at yac@hartfordsymphony.org and include “Scholarships” in the subject line.

The 2023 YAC Application Deadline has passed.

First Round of Competition

  • Contestants must submit video recordings of two (2) pieces using the digital application form. Click here for tips about recording your videos. 
  • One piece must be a movement, or excerpt of a movement, of a concerto or similar large-scale work for solo instrument and orchestra.* The second piece should be an encore-style work for solo instrument that is no more than 5 minutes long.
  • The concerto excerpt must be recorded with live piano accompaniment. Please contact us if you need assistance finding an accompanist.
  • Each recording should be a maximum of five (5) minutes long. Please indicate appropriate measure numbers on your application.
  • Each recording (piece) must be unedited. Only single-take recordings will be considered.
  • All music must be memorized.

* Repertoire is subject to approval by the Hartford Symphony Orchestra. Please contact us if you have any questions.

Semi-Final Round of Competition

  • Selected contestants must perform their entire concerto movement with piano accompaniment.
  • You must perform the same concerto as you recorded for the First Round.
  • The top five (5) contestants will advance to the Final Round on May 20.

Final Round of Competition

  • Five Finalists will perform their concerto movement live with the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.
  • The top three winners will perform a solo encore piece (this must be the same piece you submitted for the First Round).
  • The 1st Place winner will be offered an opportunity to perform with the HSO during the 2023-24 season.

1st Place $1000

2nd Place $750

3rd Place $500

Thank you to our 2022-2023 Young Artist Competition Sponsors! 

The Richard P. Garmany Fund at the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving
Jeffrey & Nancy Hoffman
Dara Ribicoff


With additional support from:

Ruth Ann C. Davis

Hollis G. Dorman

Michelle Duffy and Robert H. Connell

Rona B. Gollob

Arnold Greenberg

Laura R. Harris

Jerry and Barbara Hess

Helen and Donald Hughlett

Irene J. Loretto

Mary and Frank Petras

Joseph Spada

Diane W. Whitney

Ellen Jeanne Goldfarb Memorial Charitable Trust

Frequently Asked Questions

Any piece that features a solo instrument with orchestral accompaniment.

Yes, please upload separate videos for each piece.

Clearly label your files in the following format: “Your Name, Title of Work” (including movement).

For example, “Timothy Brown, Gershwin Concerto in F, First Mvmt.”

We’re happy to help you! Email us at yac@hartfordsymphony.org for further assistance.